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Arizona Governor Takes Action on Border Wall Gaps, Blames Biden for Delays

Newsweek logo Newsweek 8/12/2022 Matthew Impelli
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed an executive order on Friday, calling for gaps in the border wall to be filled. Above, construction continues along the border wall with Mexico championed by U.S. President Donald Trump on January 12, 2021 in Sasabe, Arizona. © Micah Garen/Getty Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed an executive order on Friday, calling for gaps in the border wall to be filled. Above, construction continues along the border wall with Mexico championed by U.S. President Donald Trump on January 12, 2021 in Sasabe, Arizona.

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed an executive order on Friday to take action on gaps in the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and blamed U.S. President Joe Biden for a delay in the wall's construction.

In a statement, Ducey said that the executive order will "immediately fill the gaps in the Yuma border wall."

"Arizona has had enough....The Biden administration's lack of urgency on border security is a dereliction of duty. For the last two years, Arizona has made every attempt to work with Washington to address the crisis on our border," Ducey said in the statement. "Time and time again we've stepped in to clean up their mess. Arizonans can't wait any longer for the federal government to deliver on their delayed promises."

The executive order issued by Ducey comes roughly two weeks after the Biden administration announced that it was going to work to close several gaps of the border wall near Yuma, Arizona.

In a statement on July 29, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced that he had "authorized U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to execute the Yuma Morelos Dam Project to close four gaps located within an incomplete border barrier project near the Morelos Dam in the U.S. Border Patrol's Yuma Sector."


Video: Governor Doug Ducey issues executive order to complete the border wall near Yuma (Dailymotion)

Replay Video

According to the statement, the gaps in the wall are located within the border wall's Yuma 6 project area. The statement also cited current dangers associated with the area and the risks it poses to migrants attempting to cross over into the U.S.

"Due to the proximity to the Morelos Dam and the swift moving Colorado River, this area presents safety and life hazard risks for migrants attempting to cross into the United States where there is a risk of drownings and injuries from falls. This area also poses a life and safety risk to first responders and agents responding to incidents in this area," the statement said.

As Ducey noted in his statement, the recent executive order also comes just a few days after the Biden administration said that the "Remain in Mexico" policy, officially known as Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), was lifted. The policy, which was imposed by former President Donald Trump, returned migrants to Mexico and had them stay there until their asylum case was approved by the U.S. immigration system.

In a statement on July 29, Mayorkas said, "MPP has endemic flaws, imposes unjustifiable human costs, and pulls resources and personnel away from other priority efforts to secure our border."

Newsweek was directed to the press release after reaching out to Ducey's office for comment. Newsweek also reached out to the White House for comment.

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